RE: Final letters in Hebrew and Arabic

From: Jonathan Rosenne (
Date: Sat Mar 10 2001 - 15:33:36 EST

Regarding Hebrew:

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Nick NICHOLAS []
> Sent: Friday, March 09, 2001 10:12 PM
> To: Unicode List
> Subject: Final letters in Hebrew and Arabic
> Many thanks to all who responded on the Albanian alphabet. No script too
> obscure, eh? :-) Kudos!
> With regard to the recent discussion on Greek final sigmas, I have a
> couple of questions on the final forms of letters in Hebrew and Arabic,
> just for the sake of comparison.
> (1) When a letter with a final variant appears alone --- say as a numeral,
> or in discussion of the letter or phoneme --- does it under any
> circumstances appear in its final form, or is it always medial?

It could be any, it is up to the author to decide what he wants.

> (2) Do diacritics --- vowel points, cantillations, extra dots on Arabic
> letters, whatever --- ever make a final form medial?

No, from a typographical point of view, they apply to both forms.

Please note that in Unicode automatic shape determination does not apply to

> Instances from any typographical practice, not just the current
> mainstream, are welcome.
> --
> Nick Nicholas. TLG, UCI, USA.;
> Many among their proselytes had sold their lands and houses to increase
> the public riches of the sect --- at the expense, indeed, of their
> unfortunate children, who found themselves beggars because their
> parents had been saints. (Edward Gibbon, _Decline and Fall_.)

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